Chocolate geometry

As a Los Angeles teacher, Nigel Nisbet turned Toblerone chocolate bars into geometry problems to motivate math-hating students, he said at a TEDx conference in southern California. He asked students: ”Why make a chocolate bar in the shape of a triangular prism?”

Chocolate science is a motivator

Colorado students are studying the chemistry and biology of chocolate — including determining the DNA fingerprints of different cacao beans — at a summer camp hosted by the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Most are entering eighth or ninth grade.

Chocolate was the key ingredient in labs and work sessions that covered forensics, thin-film chromatography, spectroscopy, DNA fingerprinting, robotics and cyber sleuthing.

. . . Students used tools such as microscopes and liquid chromatography equipment in situations that many college students don’t handle until a few years into their coursework.

“The Case of the Recipe Rip-off” focused on solving the fictional disappearance of a prized chocolate recipe. The story including feuding companies, counterfeit candy and even a murder.

Students enjoyed field trips to Patsy’s Candies and Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. When I was in school, our only science field trip was to Volo Bog. No wonder I ended up as an English major.

The Center for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Education designed the program with the chemistry and biology departments, and the UCCS Center for Homeland Security, reports The Gazette. Homeland Security? Are the terrorists trying to contaminate our chocolate?

Chocolate: Do the math

Chocolate boosts math performance, claim British researchers. From Neatorama:

Mental arithmetic became easier after volunteers had been given large amounts of compounds found in chocolate, called flavanols, in a hot cocoa drink. They were also less likely to feel tired or mentally drained . . .

Chocolate: the wonder drug.